Whole Foods Market Battles Inflation, Absorbs Price Increases

In a response to skyrocketing prices, Whole Foods Market asked suppliers during a virtual summit in December to help lower prices and to prioritize the company when filling out of stock products, according to a report from The Wall Street Journal. The report comes as retailers are facing record-breaking price inflation, which is up 11.8% this December compared to last, according to the Consumer Price Index. Whole Foods Market’s premium products and higher pricing, combined with ongoing supply-chain challenges, means the company is particularly susceptible to lost revenue. In addition, a spokesperson said the chain has attempted to mitigate shelf-price inflation by absorbing some of the cost increases that vendors have implemented in the past year. Whole Foods Markets’ rate of price increases at shelf level is currently below the national average. In fact, the company has even lowered prices in some categories including cereal, bread and sparking water. In response to higher grocery bills, customers are looking for bargains now more than ever. The company is also restructuring its merchandising teams and is investing in high-growth potential categories, such as dairy. Whole Foods Market says it aims to increase foot traffic with more in-store events and will work with suppliers to emphasize promotions over the coming year.